08 March 2008

A Confession (Of Sorts)

Following the recent, high-profile exposures of Margaret B. Jones’ Love and Consequences (in which a young woman from Sherman Oaks purports to be a former gang member from L.A.) and Misha Defonseca’s Misha: A Mémoire of the Holocaust (in which a Gentile purports to be a Jewish refugee raised by wolves — no, really), I am seizing the initiative to clarify a few details in my recent autobiography, A Method to This Madison: How I Survived the Mean Streets of Rio de Janeiro as an Orphaned Black Jewish Lesbian Midget Single Mother and Also Later Discovered the Cure for Cancer.

I am aware that documents and eyewitnesses do not always bear out a few — a very few — of my assertions. However, I very sincerely believe the book to be true in spirit, and I will vouch with every breath for the emotional factuality of every statement I have made.

For example, critics contest my claim that I am the President of France. And I am aware that an exhaustive investigation of back issues of the magazine Paris Match at the laundromat and close observation of the waxworks in the Hall of Fame at the Musée Grévin do indeed indicate that, during the period in question (1985–present), three different people also claim to have held that post. Bolstering their counterclaims is the fact that each of these gentlemen is French. However, my passport and other legal documents do confirm, irrefutably, that I have spent a great deal of time in France. I believe that history will bear me out. Feet first, perhaps, but nevertheless.

Some investigators believe that one of these men, not I, is the current President of France.

I may have exaggerated slightly when I said that I had written A la recherche du temps perdu. Internet sleuths have tracked down royalty statements addressed to one Marcel Proust, which might suggest that he is the author of that novel. However, it is provably true that I wrote the title. A la recherche du temps perdu — I just did it again!

When my editor questioned portions of Chapter 37, which discusses in detail my successful career as a lounge singer in Las Vegas, I provided her with audio recordings that she may have believed supported my claims. However, closer examination may reveal that these are old Vic Damone records with the name “Vic Damone” crossed out, and my own name written over in Magic Marker. What I intended for my editor — and my readers — to understand was that I wanted to sing like Vic Damone. Yet again, the emotional truth of my book is rock-solid.

Unfortunately, by including the above photo in my book with the caption “Here I am on the set of Sweeney Todd with Helena Bonham Carter,” I may have given some readers the impression that I am Johnny Depp. Well, I am — in my dreams. And no one can disprove that.

My birth certificate and school records do suggest that I was raised by a certain Mr. and Mrs. Madison, or Mattislow, a kindly couple in the state of Texas, and not by a foster family of wolves in the forests of Germany. Although there are substantial gaps in the record, experts on animal behavior have told me that the time involved would have been insufficient for any wolf to make me a sandwich or to teach me to play poker, as I wrote in a series of heartwarming scenes in my book. Some of these “experts” have the audacity to allege that inclusion of such scenes only proves that I know nothing about wolves, who lack hands that would be necessary to wield a knife in order to spread the peanut butter, and who are very bad card players.

But I am also a very bad card player — that’s my point! And a closer reading of the passages under scrutiny reveals that I never said my parents were wolves — only that they had sharp teeth and that I was constantly afraid that they would bite me.

And that fear was wholly justified.

To date, no critics have challenged the other chapters in my book, in which I detail my experiences as a tree surgeon in the Philippine jungles, my service as a Honduran mercenary, my heroic rescue of a shipwrecked boatload of puppies, my leadership of the Russian mafia, my moon landing, my simultaneous editorship of National Review and Slutty Juggz, my winning the Triple Crown in 1987, or my years as lovable Tootie on TV’s Facts of Life. And therefore it is without reservation that I urge you to read my book.

Like any reputable autobiographer, I stand by my every word. Until further notice.